He may be on the brink of adulthood, but Justin Bieber isn't ready to let go of his past.
In V Magazine's spring preview issue, the 17-year-old singer admits that while "people need to know I'm not a kid anymore," he doesn't feel "completely grown-up" just yet. "I'm still learning."
Unlike so many teen singers before him, Bieber hopes to maintain his squeaky clean image for at least a few more years.
"I'm not going to try to conform to what people want me to be or go out there and start partying, have people see me with alcohol. I want to do it at my own pace," Bieber, who turns 18 on March 1, says. "I don't want to start singing about things like sex, drugs and swearing. I'm into love, and maybe I'll get more into making love when I'm older. But I want to be someone who is respected by everybody."
The "Baby" singer — who's been dating 19-year-old Selena Gomez for more than a year — says he hopes to have a career similar to Michael Jackson.
"I want to be successful and be great at what I do. But eventually, I want to become the best at what I do," Bieber explains. "I want to be better than anybody who's ever done it. And in order to do that, I need to strive to be the best, be good to people and treat people with respect, and work as hard as I can. Because for me, I work so hard and this consumes my life — it's not worth it if I'm not the best."
"When I was coming up, trying to get to where I am now, people were so happy for me. They were rooting for me. Now that I'm on top, everyone wants to bring me down. Everyone's trying to tug at me and take my spot," Bieber complains. "A lot of people say they hate Justin Bieber who haven't even listened to my music. They just hate the idea of me."
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